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Objective: Technologies such as Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) offer many benefits to health care providers and may raise stakeholder concerns. This study reviews a new technology from another industry, summarizes previous research on medical applications of RFID, and analyses survey responses on RFID applications. The goal is to develop principles for evaluating and implementing new technologies.
Design: Marketing and stakeholder theories were used to develop lessons from the case study and from prior research. A survey was mailed to adults in four Midwestern states in the US.
Main Outcome Measures: Respondent support ratings for two medical and two non-medical applications of RFID were analysed using principal component analysis and binary logistic regressions. Profiles of those supporting the applications were developed.
Results: The case study highlighted the importance of considering the needs and concerns of all stakeholders. Previous studies suggested that many hospital administrators who examined RFID may not have included some stakeholders. This research found that support for RFID varied across respondents and across applications. Anxiety about technology was negatively linked with RFID support. Religiosity also had negative coefficients for some applications.
Conclusions: Administrators considering new technologies need to consider patient privacy needs and stakeholder concerns. Surveying stakeholders and utilizing advisory boards could help administrators tailor their actions to the communities they serve. A few opponents to a technology can limit its adoption. Regular, two-way communications may help health care organizations improve technology decisions and enhance the odds of implementation success.